Community based approach in mangrove restoration and conservation

Tarek Temraz, EEAA
Published: 12 January 2017
Last edited: 30 September 2020
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Summary

In 2001 a degradation of the mangrove stands in Egypt was noted also due to urbanization and lack of awareness. A small scale mangrove reforestation study was conducted in Sharm Elshiek, Nabq focusing on planting, transplanting, monitoring and evaluating mangrove stands with integrating the main beneficiaries, the local communities. The rehabilitation resulted in the regeneration of the stands and an overall growth increase in the occupancy area was recorded.

Classifications

Region
North Africa
Scale of implementation
Local
Ecosystem
Mangrove
Marine and coastal ecosystems
Theme
Coastal and marine spatial management
Local actors
Protected and conserved areas governance
Protected and conserved areas management planning
Challenges
Land and Forest degradation
Loss of Biodiversity
Ecosystem loss
Pollution (incl. eutrophication and litter)
Unsustainable harvesting incl. Overfishing
Infrastructure development
Physical resource extraction
Changes in socio-cultural context
Lack of public and decision maker’s awareness
Poor governance and participation
Aichi targets
Target 10: Ecosystems vulnerable to climate change
Target 15: Ecosystem restoration and resilience

Location

Ras Mohamed, Qesm Sharm Ash Sheikh, South Sinai, Egypt

Challenges

This solution addresses the impacts on the mangrove stands at Nabq area which are mainly caused by human activities like wood collection, environmental pollution (land and sea based), overgrazing by camels, gleaning of animals (fish and invertebrate larvae) as well as coastal zone development. The lack of awareness towards biodiversity conservation issues can be named as main source of the challenges.

Beneficiaries

The local people of Sharm Elshiek, the Nabq pilot area and the national policy.

How do the building blocks interact?

A small scale experiment was conducted at Sharm Elshiek, Nabq to test locally the reforestation of the declining mangrove stands all over the Egyptian shoreline. As a base for sustainability and to get local people involved into the project it was necessary to start with an awareness building campaign within the communities of Nabq. Out of the new understanding of the ecosystem value also for their livelihood local people volunteered to support the EEAA in planting and transplanting seeds and seedlings into the dedicated area as well as protecting and cleaning the impacted stands in Sharm Elshiek. To proof the impact of the efforts and also to create a base for further replication of the project a monitoring of the ecosystem was conducted. To get more information of the actual value and to highlight the necessity of replicating the reforestation activities and protecting the mangrove stands not only in the Nabq area in Egypt the ecosystem was evaluated over its services and goods for the Egyptian people. The monitoring and evaluation information can now be used to create awareness towards mangrove protection also in other impacted areas in Egypt.

Impacts

• The mangrove reforestation project was replicated in several other areas along the Red Sea especially in degraded areas with native mangrove stands. • The collection of fish and invertebrate larvae stopped due to law enforcement by local people. Knowing about the importance of the ecosystem to their livelihoods local people reduced their impact and fishing stocks and invertebrate numbers recovered. • The aim of the reforestation effort was reached as the mangroves in Nabq area recovered and the density is higher than recorded in 2001. The rehabilitation resulted in better growth and regeneration in the stand and an overall growth and increase in the occupancy area was recorded.

Contributed by

Tarek Temraz Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA)

Other contributors

Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA)